Why Lucas Ballingall has been eating like a king in build-up to the biggest fight of his career
Lucas Ballingall is ready to land the English lightweight crown after eating like a king in the build-up to the biggest battle of his career.
The Portsmouth fighter faces title holder Myron Mills in Sheffield on Friday as he attempts to pick up his first belt.
Usually Ballingall, 24, would have spent weeks on a strict diet and starving himself in order to make sure he was in perfect shape.
But after bringing nutritionist Jack Coak onto his team for his title bout, tests showed he'd actually been under-eating throughout his career.
So, incredibly, Ballingall - 13-1 as a professional - has eaten more than ever before in the build-up to what he sees as the first step on his journey to where he wants to get in the sport.
He explained: 'I have my nutritionist, Greg Allison, who’s always helped me with making weight, meal plans and given me advice over the years.
'We’ve got another guy on board called Jack Coak, my brother (Mikey McKinson) used him first and it worked well with him. We did some tests and we found out I’ve been under-eating. I wish I was told that years ago!
‘When you under-eat you’re starving your body and it’s even harder to lose weight when you’re doing it that way.
‘I’m eating more than I ever have before, feeling better, and the weight is still coming off so little things like that have made a real difference.
‘I’d have like to have known it a little earlier in my career but at least we’ve got it now, so I feel the best I’ve ever felt.'
Ballingall could not be more determined to pick up the first title of his career.
Since turning pro six years ago, he has seen three title fights fall through because of injury to either himself or scheduled opponents.
Now his big chance is finally here, Ballingall is promising to take it with both hands in front of supporters in Yorkshire.
He said: 'As soon as I’m in that ring and that bell goes, I go to work, I win that belt.
'Afterwards, I can chill out with my belt and say it was all worth it - all the bad luck I’ve had over the years - I’ve finally got to where I want to be and win my first title.'
Ballingall's English lightweight title battle with Mills will be broadcast live on Fightzone TV.